PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – An elderly woman was killed and her daughters hospitalized after an intense fire consumed a home overnight in Richland Township.
A huge cloud of thick smoke poured from the home in the 1000-block of Woodhill Drive.
Neighbors say the fire started around 3 a.m. with flames quickly engulfing the residence.
“There were a couple of explosions,” said Robert Maker, a neighbor. “Apparently, there were some oxygen tanks inside, and that woke us up. Then, we came out and the house was pretty much fully engulfed.”
“We just heard a big bang,” added Hanna Clogan, another neighbor. “We thought it was gunshots, and I look out my window and I just see the house on fire.”
An elderly woman and her two daughters were inside when the fire started.
Neighbors say 95-year-old Evelyn Provost was trapped in an upstairs bedroom.
“The one lady was screaming help and running around like door to door, screaming help,” neighbor Jenna Peluso said.
The fire was so intense, one of the victim’s daughters jumped from a bedroom window on the other side of the chimney. She landed on an air conditioner below and was taken to UPMC Mercy Hospital.
The combination of exploding oxygen tanks and extreme heat forced firefighters to keep their distance as they brought the flames under control.
Both of the victim’s daughters were hospitalized.
“They were just very nice people, very quiet,” said Maker. “The daughters took very good care of their mother and she was just a very sweet lady.”
“She was a very kindhearted lady and she’s going to be very missed,” Clogan said.
Meanwhile, a man was also treated at the scene of a fire in Springfield Township, Mercer County overnight.
It’s believed the fire started in the living room of his Cannery Road home around 3 a.m.